Some prophecy teachers are saying that there is going to be a world religion, in which all of the world’s major religious faiths and their leaders will somehow be united, with the aim of promoting peace around the world. It may not be necessary to create a “one – god” or “one -philosophy” religion, but just to make all beliefs, by law, equally acceptable. Hinduism, for example, is an umbrella term for numerous differing beliefs which have a few uniting principles.
It’s pretty common to hear people claim that all war is caused by religion. That claim is easily disproved, since, as I noted earlier, far more people were killed in the 20th century by atheistic philosophies than by all so- called ‘religious’ wars of the previous 2000 years. In any case, many claim that if we can just get the world’s religions to accept and to dialogue with each other, there would be no more war. Those who wish for a world government see no alternative but to try to bring the world’s religions together somehow. There are numerous organizations and individuals working to bring this goal to reality, including some prominent politicians. One example is Tony Blair, who was the Prime Minister of the U.K. for several years. Another is the Pope.
We now have pluralism in western nations, where once the majority of people and the laws of the land were originated and driven by Christian principles. If or when such ‘getting along’ between religions is made international law, which is in process under the guise of tolerance and respect, the genuine Christian gospel will be silenced. There are people working on the dilution or dumping of the gospel, even in some churches in America. The Bible warns that near the end there will be a ‘rebellion’ (‘apostasy’ in the KJV), which means a ‘falling away’ of people from the Christian faith. We must be sure that we do not join that rebellion. The time is coming when the only way to know the true gospel will be to read the Bible for yourself. Keep and treasure a copy for yourself, even and especially if it becomes labelled as “hate speech” in a new wave of political correctness.
Usually prophecy teachers get the idea of a coming world religion from Revelation chapter 17. Here we are introduced to a woman who is called a ’prostitute’ (verse 1) and the ‘mother of prostitutes’ (verse 5). She is not a real human woman of the last days, but a representation of false religion. In the Old Testament, the worship of other gods rather than the one true god is known as spiritual ‘adultery’, and a prostitute is an adulterer. Those who turn from the true God to false gods are committing ‘adultery’ with that god, just as a married person who has relations with another man’s husband or wife is committing adultery and is being unfaithful. God considers his people as his own possession-his wife who he cares for. For examples, see Jeremiah 9:2; Ezekiel 23:37; and Matthew 12:39.
The ‘great prostitute’ of Revelation is seen ‘on many waters’, which represent the nations of the earth, (Revelation17:15). She sits on a beast which largely represents the empire of Antichrist (verses 8 and 11). The heads of the beast speak of past empires or civilizations which the prostitute has had power over (verses 9-10), and the ten horns of the beast are the ten world leaders who will be under his command for the short time that they will be allowed by God to rule (17:12-14).
The woman originates from ancient Babylon (verse 18), where a world religion without God was first attempted, (Genesis 11:1-9). It’s interesting that the first attempt at a world religion occurred together with the first attempt at world government: the two were linked, as they will be during the Tribulation.
The reference to a city in Revelation 18:18 could also be the Rome of John’s time, and/ or a future world capital city. The city of ‘seven hills’ of John’s day (17:9) was Rome: it was once commonly referred to as the city of seven hills. Rome was also the center of the ruling empire of John’s day (‘one is’17:10). It is a normal Biblical device to call one city by the name of another which it reflects, culturally or spiritually. For example, Jerusalem‘is figuratively called Sodom and Egypt’, (11:8). ‘Sodom’ refers to its low level of morality, and ‘Egypt’ to slavery.
Chapter 18 of Revelation appears to speak of a real city of Babylon, and for that reason some people believe that the city which now remains in Iraq, as not much more than a tourist attraction, will somehow become the world’s capital city in the last years. I personally think that the physical city is only a memory in the mind of God as He brings judgment on those past places and peoples (16:19, and see Matthew11:20-24). The world system of false worship in the last days is related to this memory of the ‘Mother of harlots’, the ancient city of Babylon.
WORLD RELIGION AND THE NATURE OF TRUTH
For most of human history, the majority of the world’s population has believed that some things were objectively true, (true no matter what your knowledge or opinion), and some things were not true. Defending objective truth was considered to be a good character trait. Now you will be considered bigoted and narrow minded if you attempt to defend what you believe by saying that it is an objective fact. Common complaints come in phrases like, How can you say that your religion is right and all the others are wrong?’ or, ‘What gives you the right to judge other peoples’ beliefs? I can remember when it was normal to have a heated discussion about something, in which facts or at least opinions would be aired and compared. Now debate is almost seen as threatening behavior, unless you argue from the ‘politically correct’ viewpoint, and what you consider to be true can be conveniently swept away. This means that if you try to question the new, fashionable view of things, then you are automatically labeled as being ‘ignorant’, ‘narrow minded’, ‘bigoted’, etc. A large number of people will do anything to avoid being labeled as such, even if it involves turning their backs on all their traditions (tradition is also a dirty word now) In this way thought, enquiry and debate are excluded so that the new, fashionable way emerges triumphant and debate is silenced. It seems to me that people are eager to jump onto the bandwagon of political correctness because it is going their way: away from the constraints and guidance of the Biblical God.
The preparation now being made for the worship of Antichrist involves the stripping of beliefs fundamental to the true Christian faith, because Christianity has dominated thinking in the West until recent decades, and Christian thinking must be weakened to make room for world government. This has necessitated the denial that there is any really objective truth to be found, but instead whatever is true for one person does not have to be true for another. This preparation can be attributed to conscious effort by some individuals and organizations, and to the work of unseen forces. As Paul said, ‘our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world, and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms’ (Ephesians6:12). Satan does not want to see a world living by Godly principles and the search for truth, but one which is in rebellion against the ways of God.
As Christianity has gradually been pushed out of public life, other philosophies and belief systems have moved in. We even find that many of those who are pleased to see this happen are very welcoming of the huge influx of Muslims to the West, or anything that will weaken the influence of Christianity. This is ironic, since Islam has very clearly defined views of what is right and wrong, and will seek to take away all freedoms that the West has enjoyed.
In the new way of viewing truth, you will be told that all religions have the same destination, but just different ways of reaching that destination. In fact all major religions are fundamentally different. They could all be wrong, but they can not all be right. If one man says that there is only one loving god, and another says that there are ten belligerent gods, and another says that there are ten thousand unconcerned and detached gods, how can all three be right? If one man says that we are already all a part of a spirit that we call God, and another says God is an alien creature from another galaxy, and another says that God is an all-present, all- powerful person distinct from our own souls, how can they all be right? But this is the logic commonly being applied to discussions on god and faith. As someone famous has said, if you don’t stand for something you’ll fall for anything.
The argument that “nobody really knows” is just a cop-out: an arbitrary statement designed to get rid of the Bible and to steer people away from committing to anything which suggests that we are responsible for our actions.
The Bible claims to be the revealed, inspired word of God, and can be supported by history, archeology and true science, and in many other ways, not least the current alignment of world events with Bible prophecy. By denying the Bible, people are turning their backs on the only hope that there is of ever knowing truth.
Once the Christian God is completely removed from public consideration, and nobody has any idea what truth really is except for a confusing soup of beliefs, theories and amusing ideas, the Antichrist will be free to move into the power vacuum.
THE ACTUAL LAST DAYS WORLD RELIGION
Some Christian teachers see the world’s major faiths being somehow grafted together to produce the last days appearance of the woman of Revelation 17. It may be that the contemporary efforts to unite world religions are preparing the world for the Antichrist, but it seems clear to me that the Antichrist is going to brush them all aside in order to be the one to be worshipped. He will be seen as the fulfillment of the hopes and dreams of all religions. Several scriptures tell us that he is going to demand worship, even claiming to be God, or a god, or an avatar, and the revealer of religious truth to the world at long last. Perhaps he will be considered the latest in a long line of prophets, messengers, avatars or representatives of God, which some people say included Jesus, Buddha, Mohammed, Gandhi, and many others. In this way no religion will have its own basic beliefs trampled on, at least in the eyes of its nominal adherents, but instead ‘fulfilled’. ‘He will magnify himself above all that is called God’. See Daniel 11:36; 2 Thessalonians 2:4; Daniel 8:11. There will be another person acting as his ‘high priest’, who will have the power to enforce the worship. Anyone who refuses to acknowledge him will be killed (Revelation 13:11-18). The method of execution is beheading: does this sound familiar?
It was interesting for me to read that Adolph Hitler wrote in his pre-war diary, ‘Mein Kampf’ that it would be necessary for him to first deceitfully gain the confidence of the Church in Germany in order to get it on his side, and after gaining power he could do what he wanted with it.
And so the coming world religion is actually going to be the worship of the man we call Antichrist. Satan will be in on the act. He is going to work in and for Antichrist. Satan has desired to be worshipped since he rebelled against God. He wanted to be equal with God, or preferably above Him (Isaiah14:12-14). Fortunately for the universe this is only wishful thinking on his part (Isaiah 14:15-17; Revelation 20:10). Satan even tried to get Jesus Christ to worship him (Matthew 4:9-10).
In the last years of Satan’s influence over the Earth people will worship him, along with his human representative, and will give the Antichrist and the false prophet/ priest their power (Revelation 13:4, and verses 13-14).
An interesting twist to all this is that the Antichrist and his ten cohorts will unknowingly be used by God. They are going to ‘hate the prostitute’- false religion- and will destroy it, fulfilling God’s will (Revelation17:16-17). This might be the point at which the Antichrist will exalt himself over all that is called ‘God’ or that is worshipped, and claim that he himself is God (2 Thessalonians 2:4).
Antichrist and the false prophet will in turn be sent to their destruction when Jesus Christ throws them into the Lake of Fire at the end of the Tribulation (Revelation 19:20).
THE ONE TRUE FAITH
Consider the scenario of there being multiple Presidents, with wildly different views and different solutions to the nation’s problems: it would be unworkable.
Since many people reject the claim that there is only one true God, or say that the Bible does not make any such claim, I will quote a few of the many scriptures which clearly state the true Christian view that there is only one God, and only one way to God:
I am the Lord, and there is no other; apart from me there is no God’ (Isaiah 45:5);
‘…there is none besides me’ (verse 6. Also see verses 14, 18, 22, and 46:9);
‘There is no one in all the earth like me’, (Exodus9:14);
‘You shall have no other gods before me’ (Exodus 20:3);
‘There is only one God’ (Romans3:30);
‘To the only God our Savior be glory’ (Jude v.25);
‘No one who denies the Son has the Father’ (1 John2:23);
‘Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to men by which we must be saved’ (Acts4:12);
‘God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life (John3:16);
‘All things have been committed to me by my Father’ (Matthew11:27);
‘I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me’ (John 14:6);
‘Whoever does not believe stands condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son’ (verse 18);
‘There is no God but one. For even if there are so called gods…for us there is but one God, the Father, from whom all things came…and there is but one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom all things came (1 Corinthians 8:4-6);
‘Even if we or an angel from heaven should preach a gospel other than the one we preached to you, let him be eternally condemned!’ (Galatians 1:8);
‘There is one God and one mediator between God and men, the man Jesus Christ’ (1 Timothy 2:5).